The approach from the London-listed brewer has been rejected, but analysts believe that the Australian company may accept a slightly higher bid in due course.
The deal would not affect the Foster’s brand in the UK, where it is owned by Heineken. But if SABMiller succeeds in its bid, its portfolio would be joined by brands such as Victoria Bitter, Carlton Draught and Crown lager.
SABMiller chief executive Graham Mackay said: “SABMiller has a proven track record of acquiring and integrating brewing companies in a way which benefits shareholders, employees, business partners and the broader community.
“We aim to strengthen the Foster’s brand portfolio and work with the local team to bring our innovation, global scale and expertise to the business.
“We continue to believe that the proposal price is attractive and offers good value to Foster’s shareholders. SABMiller can conclude a transaction quickly and will continue to seek engagement with the board of Foster’s to put an agreed proposal to Foster’s shareholders.”
This year the Foster’s group demerged its wine division, which is now a separate entity called Treasury Wine Estates.